Boobs on Your Tube: Shondaland’s Bisexual Firefighter and Dr. Orgasm Are The Crossover Queer Romance You’ve Waited For

Hello! Welcome to a VERY exciting edition of your weekly television round up, Boobs on Your Tube! This week, wow Batwoman navigated some bisexual vampires. SUPERGIRL CELEBRATED ONE HUNDRED EPISODES by sending Kara and Lena through space and time! Vanderpump Rules also got mighty bisexual which means that noted Bravo television fanatic Kayla really got to strut her stuff for our dear website. Caity Lotz made her directing debut on Legends of Tomorrow while Ava fought Genghis Khan (this show!!). Alice has a new hook-up and new stand-up material on Good Trouble. Archie’s mom came out as a late-in-life gay on Riverdale! Queer Molly Ringwald for everybody! I’m Not Okay With This has an angsty lesbian who telekinetically gives her crush’s boyfriend a nosebleed, so we assume you’re gonna want to watch.

Riese also really covered that L Word beat this week: Here’s an absolutely marvelous in-depth interview with Generation Q costume designer Dierdra Govan and style thief shopping guide to Alice’s jumpsuits to match!! And she also covered the OG’s episode 309 with Carly for the podcast.

Notes from the TV Team: 

+ Time got away from me this week, so look for that Party of Five piece early next week. On the plus side, that gives you the weekend to catch up with the Acosta family so if you haven’t already, do that. I have a lot of feelings about this show and can’t wait to share. — Natalie

+ I really need Zoey’s Extraordinary Playlist to add a queer lady because I want us to be able to write about that show so badly. IT’S SO GOOD. It’s like if Glee and Crazy Ex-Girlfriend had a child that somehow grew up to be more well-adjusted than either of them! Just wanted to shout about it. #GiveLaurenGrahamAGirlfriend — Valerie Anne

+ None of us watch The Conners, but I guess Aunt Jackie is in a thruple now? Do with that information what you will.   — Carmen


God Friended Me 214: “Raspberry Pie”

Written by Natalie

Ali and Emily meet.

Have you ever met someone at exactly the wrong moment? Like when you’re just out of a relationship and still nursing those scars? Or you’ve got a project at work or school that’s just consuming you and you don’t have time for anything else? Well, that’s what happens to Ali Finer this week on God Friended Me.

She meets Emily — “Ali and Emily!” I scream in the throes of a horrible PLL flashback — in the waiting room of her fertility specialist. Emily breaks the unwritten rules of waiting rooms and tries to start up a conversation. She’s charming so Ali puts aside her clipboard and introduces herself. They discover that they share a favorite novel and a common acquaintance and that Emily teaches at Ali’s alma mater. They strike up an easy rapport which leads to Emily oversharing about her reasons for freezing her eggs. Though she finds Emily’s candor refreshing, Ali doesn’t return it: instead, she insists that she’s busy figuring her life out too. She does, however, manage to name drop the bar she runs….smooth, Ali, very smooth.

Sure enough, Emily shows up at the bar the next day and asks Ali out on a date. When Ali doesn’t answer right away, Emily assumes she misread the signals but Ali assures her she didn’t. Ali declines the offer, chalking it up to bad timing, and Emily leaves a little heartbroken. Later, Ali backs out of dinner plans with her dad and he tracks her down to talk. She explains what happened and admits she said no to the date, despite thinking Emily was great. She doesn’t want to invite someone into her life just as she’s about to undergo chemo. As is his wont, Papa Pope comes through with some great advice.

“It’s naive to think that your life won’t change a great deal over the coming months, and if you’re not interested in dating right now, well, that’s fine, but just because your life will change doesn’t mean it needs to stop,” he tells her.

The pair run into each other again at the fertility specialist’s office and, this time, Ali tells Emily the truth: about her cancer, about her fear and about the real reason she said no to the date. Emily takes the news in stride and immediately asks Ali out again.


All American 214: “Who Shot Ya”

Written by Natalie

Coop tries to calm her parents' anxiety. It does not work.

This week episode of All American opens with Crenshaw lamenting the loss of another son…though half the people at Tyrone’s homegoing service couldn’t stand him when he was alive…Spencer and his mom are there, Coop and her parents are there and, surprisingly, so is Shawn’s mom. Maybe everybody just came to make sure he was really dead.

Outside the church, Spencer corners Coop. He’s worried that she’s still a suspect in Tyrone’s murder but Coop is remarkably calm about the whole situation. But Spencer is unconvinced: the threat to Coop — from the investigation or from Tyrone’s boys seeking revenge — distracts him from the rehab of his shoulder injury. Mrs. Baker, the newly elected DA, shares Spencer’s concern and urges him to get Coop a good lawyer, quickly…which, thanks to Layla, he manages to do. But Coop doesn’t take kindly to Spencer’s interference and lashes out when her best friend shows up back in Crenshaw. Spencer’s stunned by her reaction; he can’t believe he’s in trouble for trying to protect her.

“No, you’re getting in trouble for creating more problems in my life, trying to hide from your own,” Coop corrects. “Listen, I’ma say this one last time. You do not have to save me, and leave this whole Tyrone thing alone.”

Escaping the pall of Tyrone’s murder isn’t as easy as Coop would like, though: security footage leaks of her carrying a gun near the scene of the murder and a warrant is issued for her arrest. Convinced that turning over the gun to the police will vindicate her, Coop sneaks away from her family and heads to Patience’s house in search of it. Why Coop feels so comfortable believing she can walk into the LAPD with an unlicensed firearm and think she’ll be okay, I don’t know, but, apparently, she’s got more faith in the cops than I do. Patience admits she tossed the gun because she loves her and doesn’t want her to go to prison.

“Look, if that ain’t some Queen and Slim, ride or die type of love, then I don’t know what is. I’ll always love you,” Coop admits, before turning and walking away. I try not to think about how that movie ended.

She meets Spencer in the park for one last hoorah before she turns herself in. He’s pieced together who really killed Tyrone — Shawn’s mother — but Coop has resigned herself to taking the fall. Ultimately, it all comes back to her, Coop surmises, and she won’t force Shawn’s mother to sacrifice another thing. At the station, Shawn’s mother confesses to the murder, realizing she can’t sacrifice another thing either, especially not Coop.


Deputy 109: “10-8 Entitlement”

Written by Natalie

Bishop readies for a fight.

We don’t get to see Bishop reveal their gender identity to their girlfriend, Genevieve; we only get the witness the uncomfortable and disheartening fallout. Bishop’s been exiled from their bedroom, forced to sleep on the couch, while Genevieve locks herself in the bedroom. Before their first day at Majors, Bishop tries to talk to Genevieve but every conversation just leads to another fight.

Bishop asks for understanding from Genevieve — they’re finally being the most authentic version of themselves — but Gen insists that she feels like she doesn’t know Bishop anymore. She asks for more time to process and Bishop gives her space….too much, perhaps, because they spend the entire day ignoring Genevieve’s calls. They meet Gen after work, eager to celebrate their first day, but Genevieve isn’t happy about being ignored. Frustrated, Bishop laments how chaotic things have gotten between them.

“I’m a lesbian,” Genevieve says, as if she’s been holding onto this thought all day. “A woman who likes women. And if you’re not a woman, what does that mean for me? For us?”

Bishop handles the sting of that response better than I do (there was a lot of yelling at my TV). They admit that they don’t know what it means for Genevieve but, for their relationship, there’s the chance for both of them to engage as their whole selves. Without a word, Genevieve turns to head home and Bishop follows close behind. Once they’re in the rideshare, Gen asks if Bishop knew they were non-binary when they moved to LA and they acknowledge that they knew but didn’t have words for it. Bishop insists it doesn’t change how they feel about Genevieve and they’re sure that they can make it work. But, in that moment, Bishop recognizes that her certainty isn’t enough if Genevieve doesn’t share it…and asks the driver to stop the car.

“Just so that we’re clear,” Bishop says, as she climbs out of the car, “I wanted your acceptance, but I did not need your acceptance.”

They finally let their emotions out, on the shoulder of the freeway, as Selena Gomez’s vocals sum up this entire hateful, uncomfortable mess: “I needed to lose you to love me.” But because this show can’t just let Bishop be the star, even of their own story, Sheriff Hollister rides to rescue…and the story ends on what an incredible ally he is, rather than leaving the focus on Bishop, where it belongs.


Nancy Drew 114: “The Sign of the Uninvited Guest”

Written by Valerie Anne

Things are getting spookier by the week in Horseshoe Bay but even in episodes where the focus is more on the larger mysteries than the characters’ side missions, they still find a way to keep the off-screen plates spinning. For example, this episode was mostly a murder mystery dinner party, where the Drew Crew retraced their steps the night of Tiffany’s murder and learned they all may have accidentally had a hand in her death. But we also got a taste of what’s going on in Bess’s life when she gets a text from Amaya asking her to be her +1 at an event, and she’s afraid their relationship is escalating from Mentor/Mentee to something more, which her girlfriend Lisbeth probably wouldn’t like too much.

bess shows george her phone

Queer culture is having to ask your friends if a girl is asking you on a date or not.

Also there was a character called Dominique who was a hacker with an alternative lifestyle haircut. Just a fact I thought you’d appreciate.

I was talking to my friend this week about how much we love Nancy Drew and how unusual it is for me to genuinely like all of the boys on a CW show. There’s no Landon, no Mon-El. No over-worshipped piece of cardboard. There’s Ace, a sweet, gentle soul who has more going on under that floppy head of hair than it seems. And Nick, a good boy with secrets of his own who cares so much about so much. And so I decided to take a peek at the list of episodes on Wikipedia, and lo and behold…there are so many women in this writer’s room! In fact, only one episode this season gives a man solo credit for an ep. And what’s more (more unusual, that is) , many of this season’s DIRECTORS were women, too. Including Sydney Freeland, the Navajo trans woman who directed Her Story. Just when I think I’ve reached peak love for this show, I learn something new about it that makes me love it more.


The Bold Type 406: “To Peg or Not To Peg”

Written by Carmen

A look that screams “boss bitch” if I’ve ever seen it.

I’ve tried to figure out how to even describe The Bold Type this week in terms that aren’t: “Y’all this was a mess.” I even deployed my fellow TV Team members Drew and Natalie on the task. Drew rearranged her day to watch the episode this morning!

And here’s what the three of our great minds, combined together, came up with: “Y’all this was. A. MESS.”

I’ve been trying to process it and clearly I can’t, so here’s a short summary: The bartender from the end of last week asked Kat to peg him this week. That meant Kat needed to buy a strap-on, a task she was less than hype about but Jane and Sutton were all over. Kat buys a rainbow strap-on (this is based on the previous week’s “Next Week On…” because I don’t think we actually see the toy in question this week) with suspenders. She wears it taped to her leg the next day at work to really become one with its energy. Then she tops the bartender. They have lots of intimate eye contact. And the following day at work she tells her friend about it, realizes she’s bisexual, and of course Jane and Sutton hold hands and support her. The end! Happily ever after! We can all go home now!

Except Natalie and I, and given past comments on the website I’ll go on a branch to say a lot of our readers, had already known Kat was bisexual?

Or rather, Kat has always described herself as queer. She dated men before Adena, and never seemed to have a specific crisis or coming-to-understanding about that fact. In fact, she had never referred to herself as a lesbian before last night’s episode? So her “big” bisexual coming-of-age was murky, fell short, and definitely didn’t land for me in the way it feels like the writers intended.

There is definitely a version of last night’s episode that I would have loved. A queer woman of color coming into her top energy by pegging this white dude — it has all kinds of intriguing subversion of expectations baked into it, some of which I wish The Bold Type had explored more. Both Natalie and Drew pointed out is that TBT seems very invested in “shocking” and “breaking sexual norms” this season (including the masturbation/sex party episode, last week’s jump into Kat’s hook ups, and now this) — but they haven’t been focused on underpinning emotional value of those explorations. Pushing boundaries just for the sake of saying you’re doing it is bad writing and… well… boring.

Next week Adena’s finally back! (YAY!) but it looks like she’s coming back to be the token biphobic lesbian (BOO!) and I’m not looking forward to it.

For my money, Drew really summed up this week’s episode best: “Kat, yes we knew you were bisexual; what we’ve learned is you’re switchier than you thought!” Kat may be bonafide switch, but this episode was a swing and a miss.


Black Lightning 314: “Book of War: Chapter One: Homecoming ”

Written by Carmen

Everyone is home safe from Markovia!

During Pierce family dinner Lyn admits that she needs to get treatment for her Greenlight addiction while Anissa lowers her lashes and bashfully admits to her family that she thinks “Grace might be the one.” HER CUTE LIL FACE AS SHE SAYS IT!!!! I wanted to shove my whole fist in my mouth and just scream!!! I can’t even describe it. See for yourself:


Honestly, that would’ve been enough to send me away sweet dreaming on queer cloud nine, but wait! There’s more!! The Markovians have bum-rushed South Freeland and captured some of the Perdi. So Anissa suits up — with Grace!! Who has clothes ready to go in Anissa’s super hero closet!!! — to save them. They meet Black Lightning on the scene and Anissa says, “How about we give them a little Lightning and Thunder” before Grace chimes in “with a touch of grace” and once again my friends, I screamed.

Grace Choi kicks some Markovian military ass (the show seems to have settled back into a version of Grace’s super strength powers from the comics and to be honest — I’m not mad about it at all). If you’ve been wondering for about the past year now about how the Markovians came to care about the United States and Freeland in the first place…. Finally we have our answer.

The person who delivers this gift is none other than my beloved Lady Eve. I want to write another 500 words solely about how pitch-fucking-perfect Jill Scott is in this role. How Lady Eve is the only villain the show ever had who cold hold a light to Tobias Whale. I want to write about her smooth, sweet voice, her cleavage, her cool as ice attitude. I want to tell you that not only was she the one who orchestrated the hit on Gambi back in Season Two; she’s also the one who taught Tobias the “raise the dead” spell that he used to bring Lala back to life in Season One. Is this some BTS plot reconstruction and fan service to explain her absence? Of course it is. And I will gladly take it. Black Lightning is better with Lady Eve in it and some things are just facts.

So Lady Eve has in her possession the suitcase that was once Lala’s, and before that was Tobias’, and before that belonged to the ASA. After a stand-off with Gambi (see: the previously mentioned hit on his life), Lady Eve turns the case over because even she realizes that the Markovians are bad news. In the top secret suitcase is the entire history of the Greenlight experiment, down all the way to Patient One — Gravedigger.

I don’t have time to get into all the details here, but if you want to see what black science fiction and afro-futurist stories look like at their best, please watch Gravedigger’s origin. The last ten minutes of Black Lightning are some of the best they’ve put forth. Taking a Captain America-style origin story, tying it into histories of systematic anti-black racism in the US military, and demonstrating how the perversions of racism can seep between every line and leave no choice but to take one world’s “All American hero” myth and instead turn the person into a villain of white America’s own creation?

GAH, it’s a so, so good.


Station 19 305 & 306: “Into the Woods” and “Ice Ice Baby”

Written by Carmen

AT JOE’S BAR EVEN!!!! A true Shondaland gay fairytale.

So Krista Vernoff, the Grey’s Anatomy showrunner since Shonda left for Netflix, has also taken over as the showrunner for Station 19. Despite the fact that I think her time helming the mothership on Grey’s has produced uneven results, I’m really enjoying what she’s doing with the firehouse. If you fell off of Station 19 before, this season is a great place to jump back in.

As it relates to our interests, one of the biggest switches is an increased focus on hot bisexual Olympian firefighter Maya (now Captain Maya to you). Last week we got an episode devoted to Maya’s origin story. In short: Her dad was an obsessive, overly competitive, overbearing asshat who didn’t teach Maya to have human feelings and also ruined her one shot a teen love with a girl on her track team. And now she doesn’t know how to act like a human being capable of friendship or loyalty or love. Basically, she’s hot bisexual Olympian robot Maya. SAD!!!

It doesn’t necessarily excuse why Maya is the way she is — arguably stepping over her best friend’s back on her way to a promotion as captain; breaking the heart of her boyfriend along the way to do so. But at least it’s moved Maya up from her previous status as “so boring it’s like watching paint dry.” Yes, I might be rooting against Maya sometimes (often), but at least now  I’m finally invested in her, you know? At least there’s an emotion attached.

One of the many great things about Krista’s tenure as dual showrunner is now there’s more cross-series romantic storylines happening, helping to turn the two-hour commitment of Grey’s/ Station 19 on Thursdays into something that feels more like one continuous show. Thus far, I’m really into it! And for Maya that means enter… drumroll please… DR. ORGASM!!!!!!

We all know that I love me some Carina DeLuca! And Grey’s has never really known what to do with her, ever since Arizona broke her heart to run back into Calliope Iphegenia Torres’ arms #SorryNotSorry.

Last week their eyes met at Joe’s Bar. Doves cried and the rainbow skies parted. Tegan and Sara sang a love song duet with Mary Lambert while Brandi Carlile played piano. True to form, this week Carina recommended that Maya tell a patient in crisis giving an emergency birth during a blizzard to, you guessed it, masturbate. (Dr. Orgasm, please never change!)

When it’s over Maya does a little flirting of her own, promising Carina that they’ve yet to scratch the surface of .. ahem.. all  the things that Maya is good at.

There’s a gay crossover romance brewing in Shondaland. And I for one, cannot wait.

The Autostraddle TV Team is made up of Riese Bernard, Carmen Phillips, Kayla Kumari Upadhyaya, Valerie Anne, Natalie, Drew Gregory, and Heather Hogan. Follow them on Twitter!

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10 Comments

  1. I guess I actually had thought Kat was gay?? I thought she’d described her past relationships with men as never feeling quite right. Possibly just projecting though because I related so hard to her whole coming out storyline, as someone who had dated men and then had a lesbian awakening in her mid 20s sparked by meeting a particular girl.

  2. Hmm I feel like part of being a good ally is NOT having your PR team announce that you’re “the ultimate ally”, but what do I know?

    Really though, I love Bex, and sounds like they’re giving a nuanced performance and are getting the chance to portray a character they feel connected to.

  3. UGH this episode of Bold Type I had such issues with too… and for other reasons. It felt like the bartender really targeted her BECAUSE he knew she slept with women. So asking her to peg him felt… creepy. Maybe it’s because I find cismen are always assuming things but damn it was uncomfortable for me to watch that conversation.

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